New SAT Reading Practice Test 25: Woodrow Wilson Speech

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Woodrow Wilson Speech

This passage is adapted from a speech given by President Woodrow Wilson to Congress on January 8, 1918. Here Wilson proposes a 14-point program for world peace. These 14 points became the basis for peace negotiations at the end of World War I.

It will be our wish and purpose that the processes
of peace, when they are begun, shall be absolutely
open and that they shall involve and permit hence-
forth no secret understandings of any kind.
05The day of conquest and aggrandizement is gone
by; so is also the day of secret covenants entered
into in the interest of particular governments and
likely at some unlooked-for moment to upset the
peace of the world. It is this happy fact, now clear
10to the view of every public man whose thoughts
do not still linger in an age that is dead and gone,
which makes it possible for every nation whose
purposes are consistent with justice and the peace
of the world to avow now or at any other time the
15objects it has in view.
We entered this war because violations of right
had occurred which touched us to the quick and
made the life of our own people impossible unless
they were corrected.… What we demand in this
20war, therefore, is nothing peculiar to ourselves. It
is that the world be made fit and safe to live in; and
particularly that it be made safe for every peace-
loving nation which, like our own, wishes to live its
own life, determine its own institutions, be assured
25of justice and fair dealing by the other peoples of
the world.… The programme of the world's peace,
therefore, is our programme; and that programme,
the only possible programme, as we see it, is this:
I. Open covenants of peace … with no private
30international understandings of any kind but
diplomacy shall proceed always frankly and
in the public view.
II. Absolute freedom of navigation upon the
seas … alike in peace and in war, except as
35the seas may be closed in whole or in part by
international action for the enforcement of
international covenants.
III. The removal, so far as possible, of all
economic barriers and the establishment of
40an equality of trade conditions among all the
nations consenting.…
IV. Adequate guarantees given and taken that
national armaments will be reduced to the
lowest point consistent with domestic safety.
45V. A free, open-minded, and absolutely impar-
tial adjustment of all colonial claims.…
VI. The evacuation of all Russian territory and
such a settlement of all questions affecting
Russia as will secure the best and freest coop-
50eration of the other nations of the world.
VII. Belgium … must be evacuated and restored,
without any attempt to limit the sovereignty
which she enjoys in common with all other
free nations.…
55VIII. All French territory should be freed and the
invaded portions restored.…
IX. A readjustment of the frontiers of Italy
should be effected along clearly recognizable
lines of nationality.
60X. The peoples of Austria-Hungary … should
be accorded the freest opportunity to autono-
mous development.
XI. Rumania, Serbia, and Montenegro should be
evacuated; occupied territories restored; and
65Serbia accorded free and secure access to
the sea.…
XII. The Turkish portion of the present Ottoman
Empire should be assured a secure sover-
eignty, but the other nationalities which are
70now under Turkish rule should be assured an
undoubted security of life.…
XIII. An independent Polish state should be
erected which should include the territories
inhabited by indisputably Polish populations.
75… [The state] should be assured a free and
secure access to the sea.…
XIV. A general association of nations must be
formed under specific covenants for the
purpose of affording mutual guarantees of
80political independence and territorial integ-
rity to great and small states alike.

1. Based on the introductory paragraphs, which choice best identifies Wilson's purpose in making this speech?

  • A. To build an international military and political alliance
  • B. To declare the sovereignty and independence of the United States
  • C. To outline ways to maintain peaceful relations in the world
  • D. To reform governments in aggressor nations bent on conquest

2. Which choice provides the best evidence for the answer to the previous question?

  • A. Lines 3-4 ("they shall involve … kind")
  • B. Lines 5-6 ("The day of … is gone by")
  • C. Lines 16-17 ("We entered … occurred")
  • D. Lines 26-27 ("The programme … is our programme")

3. As used in line 31, "frankly" most nearly means

  • A. in an honest manner.
  • B. in a blunt manner.
  • C. in an unguarded manner.
  • D. in an outspoken manner.

4. Based on the passage, it can be reasonably inferred that in the past,

  • A. the United States avoided alliances.
  • B. some nations formed private pacts with one another.
  • C. wars usually involved only two nations.
  • D. the borders of France and Italy were not well-defined.

5. Which choice provides the best support for the answer to the previous question?

  • A. Lines 1-4 ("It will be … of any kind")
  • B. Lines 16-19 ("We entered … corrected")
  • C. Lines 55-59 ("All French … of nationality")
  • D. Lines 77-81 ("A general … states alike")

6. As used in line 13, "consistent" most nearly means

  • A. dependable.
  • B. continuing.
  • C. agreeable.
  • D. coherent.

7. In lines 45-46 ("A free … colonial claims"), Wilson argues that to preserve peace, nations must

  • A. engage in free, open, and fair trade with colonies.
  • B. give up all aspirations for territorial and economic expansion.
  • C. provide constitutional protections for colonies.
  • D. work to resolve conflicts originating from imperial conquests.

8. Points VI through VIII serve as evidence to support which claim made by Wilson throughout the speech?

  • A. Democratic nations ought to sign pacts of economic and political cooperation.
  • B. During the war, aggressors damaged property that they should repair and restore.
  • C. In the past, nations violated one another's territorial sovereignty.
  • D. Former colonies are entitled to establish free and democratic governments.

9. Which of the following approaches to international relations is most similar to Wilson's approach?

  • A. Economic sanctions against ideological enemies
  • B. Joint efforts to mediate conflict among nations
  • C. Nongovernmental organizations to regulate trade
  • D. Unilateral military action against unfriendly regimes

10. The main flow of Wilson's argument can be described as

  • A. a statement and restatement of the argument.
  • B. a statement of the argument followed by specific examples.
  • C. initial claims followed by counterclaims.
  • D. specific examples leading to a concluding argument.